BHAWANIPATNA: The Archeological Survey of India (ASI) will soon excavate the historical Asurgarh fort site near Narla block in Kalahandi district. A team of ASI officials that is camping at the site has started marking the area for excavation that would throw light into the civilisation that existed during 5th century AD at the protected site. The team is being led by archeologist of ASI and excavation wing’s chief DB Gadanayak.
An ancient metropolis, Asurgarh is considered contemporaneous to Sisupalagarh, Ujjain, Ahichatra, Kosambi and other ancient Indian cities. Different antiquities, structures, coins and beads were excavated from the site. Though in 1973 the site was declared protected under the Ancient Monuments and Archeological Sites and Monuments Act, 1958, proper excavation and preservation of monuments are not being done. In fact, the site was considered an emporium of bead-making and trading and its hydraulic system was considered unique.
The fort was planned in a rectangular pattern as per Kautalyan principles of ‘Durgabidhana’ and ancient Indian geometrical formula. Gadnayak said currently the team is camping at Dekhunpada village on the outskirts of the central fort of Asurgarh and marking work is being done since November 24. After completion of marking process, archeologists and archeology students from different universities will join in first phase scientific excavation of the fort site that will continue for four months.
Asurgarh fort consists of main fort and exterior fortification. The main fortification spreads over 12 hectares and there was also an external fortification, which is now in ruins. At present, the height and width of the fortified wall measure 11 m x 7.5 m and the encircled moat measures 36 m in width. A stone barrage constructed over the Sandol river in the north-west side of the fort to provide controlled water to the fortified area and the moat still exist. Asurgarh is famous for its excellent hydraulic technique and water management.